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Dave Grohl sat on his throne at RFK Stadium last weekend, defying the broken leg which threatened to cancel the Foo Fighters’ 20th anniversary bash.
“I would not… I WOULD NEVER, NEVER have cancelled this fucking show for anything,” Grohl says. “This is the one! This is the one! I’m so fucking glad you guys are here to see this shit. Because I fucking hope this never happens again.”
Through a full day of music and thunderstorms, which cleared the stadium for a time, fans enjoyed acts like Gary Clark Jr., Trombone Shorty, and Heart. As a newspaper that covers the local scene, we were there for it all. But when the Foos came on, we had a problem—we couldn’t take any pictures.
The band’s management gave our freelance photographer a release form which would have given the Foo Fighters “the right to exploit all or a part of the Photos in any and all media, now known or hereafter devised, throughout the universe, in perpetuity, in all configurations” without any approval or payment or consideration for the photographer.
That contract is absurd. It not only demanded the photographers’ copyright, but also reserved the right to tell City Paper what images we could use and how we could use them.
So, we went around them, asking fans for their best pictures from the show. We paid the two winners on this page, and they keep their copyright to their photos. It was a good, one-time solution to ridiculous demands.
Grohl and the Foos put on a good show, but they ought to have somebody look at that contract. Demanding the work of creatives for free isn’t very rock ’n’ roll.